How Long Do Dog Breeds Live?

We all know that different dog breeds can have very different lifespans. Here are the best figures we have from three recent English studies. Please read this first to help you understand the figures.

Problems with breed lifespan data

  1. The figures quoted are median lifespans. Juvenile deaths are included which lower the median. For example, a six-year-old dog having already survived that long will therefore expect a higher median lifespan than these figures suggest for all dogs from puppyhood. The ages should still be valid as a comparison between breeds.

    dog lifespan data
    Dogs less than 10kg and over 20kg at Walkerville Vet. Ages are shown as a percentage of the total for that group.
  2. Studies use self-reported data and often get response rates of only one in four. This will tend to create reporting bias where people are more likely to send back data for atypical results such as early deaths. The data below doesn’t include breeds with very low numbers or response rates.
  3. These studies use old data. All three studies use data for dogs who died before the study date and therefore didn’t have access to many recent advances in veterinary care. This may mean modern lifespans are generally older but it may also explain the idea (myth?) that large dogs die sooner. Look at this recent data from our clinic on 800 living patients. If you can see any difference between large and small dog lifespans you’re doing better than me. Read why I think old dogs now live longer than they used to.

Dog Breed Lifespan Chart 

Dog breed longevity in the table below comes from three UK studies, which are the most recent and probably most similar to Australian dogs. View each dog breed here.

DOG BREED ADAMS(2010) MICHELL(1999) O’NEILL(2013)
Afghan Hound 11 y , 11 m 12
Airedale Terrier 10 y , 9 m 11.2
Akita 9 y , 11 m
Alaskan Malamute 10 v , 8 m
American Cocker Spaniel 10 y , 4 m 12.5
Australian Cattle Dog 11 y , 8 m
Australian Shepherd 9 y
Australian Silky Terrier 14 y , 3 m
Basenji 13 y , 7 m
Basset Hound 11 y , 4 m 12.8
Beagle 12 y , 8 m 13.3
Bearded Collie 13 y , 6 m 12.3 13.7
Bedlington Terrier 13 y , 5 m 14.3
Belgian Shepherd 12 y , 6 m
Bernese Mountain Dog 8 y 7
Bichon Frise 12 y , 11 m 12.7
Border Collie 12 y , 3 m 13 13.5
Border Terrier 14 y 13.8 12
Borzoi 9 y , 1 m
Boston Terrier 10 y , 11 m
Bouvier Des Flandres 11 y , 4 m
Boxer 10 y , 3 m 10.4 10
Briard 11 y , 2 m
British Bulldog 6 y , 3 m 6.7 8.4
Brittany 12 y , 11 m
Bull Terrier 10 y 12.9 11.2
Bullmastiff 7 y , 6 m 8.6
Cairn Terrier 14 y 13.2 13.4
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 11 y , 5 m 10.7 9.9
Chihuahua 13 7.1
Chinese Crested 10 y , 1 m
Chow Chow 13.5
Cocker Spaniel 11 y , 2 m 11.8 11.5
Cross Breed 13.2 13.1
Dachshund 12 y , 8 m 12.2
Dalmatian 12 y , 6 m 13 13.3
Deerhound 9.5
Dobermann 10 y , 6 m 9.8 9.2
Dogue de Bordeaux 3 y, 10 m* 5.5
English Setter 11 y , 7 m 11.2
English Springer Spaniel 12 y 13 13.3
Finnish Lapphund 7 y , 4 m
Finnish Spitz 11 y , 2 m
Flatcoated Retriever 9 y , 10 m 9.5
Fox Terrier 13 y , 2 m
French Bulldog 9 y
German Shepherd Dog 10.3 11
German Shorthaired Pointer 12.3
German Pinscher 11 y , 5 m
Golden Retriever 12 y , 3 m 12 12.5
Gordon Setter 11 y , 1 m 11.3
Great Dane 6 y , 6 m 8.4 6
Greyhound 9 y , 1 m 13.2 10.8
Griffon Bruxellois 12 y
Havanese 10 y, 3 m*
Hungarian Vizsla 12.5
Irish Setter 12 y 11.8
Irish Wolfhound 7 y 6.2
Italian Greyhound 13 y , 6 m
Italian Spinone 9 y
Jack Russell Terrier 13.6 13.4
Japanese Chin 9 y , 3 m
Keeshond 12 y , 2 m
King Charles Spaniel 10.1 12
Labrador Retriever 12 y , 3 m 12.6 12.5
Lhasa Apso 14 y , 4 m 9 13
Lowchen 10 y
Lurcher 12.6
Maltese 12 y , 3 m
Manchester Terrier 12 y , 10 m
Maremma Sheepdog 10 y
Miniature Dachshund 14.4 13.5
Miniature Poodle 13 y , 11 m 14.8 14.2
Miniature Schnauzer 12 y , 1 m 8.5
Newfoundland 9 y , 8 m
Norfolk Terrier 10
Old English Sheepdog 10 y , 9 m 11.8
Pekingese 11 y , 5 m 13.3
Polish Lowland Sheepdog 9 y , 7 m
Pomeranian 9 y , 8 m
Portuguese Water Dog 11 y , 5 m
Pug Dog 11 y
Rhodesian Ridgeback 11 y 9.1
Rottweiler 8 y , 11 m 9.8 8
Rough Collie 12.2 12
Saluki 12 y
Samoyed 12 y , 6 m 11
Schipperke 13 y
Scottish Terrier 10 y , 3 m 12 12
Shetland Sheepdog 12 y , 6 m 13.3 12.5
Shih Tzu 13 y , 2 m 13.4 13.3
Siberian Husky 12 y , 7 m
Smooth Collie 13
Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier 12 y , 6 m
St Bernard 7 4.1
Staffordshire Bull Terrier 12 y , 9 m 10 10.7
Standard Poodle 12 y 12
Swedish Vallhund 14 y , 2 m
Tibetan Spaniel 14 y , 5 m
Tibetan Terrier 14.3
Toy Poodle 14 y , 8 m 14.4
Weimaraner 11 y , 2 m 10 12.6
Welsh Corgi Cardigan 12 y , 2 m 11.3*
Welsh Corgi Pembroke 12 y , 3 m 11.3*
Welsh Springer Spaniel 12 y , 7 m 11.5
West Highland White Terrier 12.8 13.5
Whippet 12 y , 10 m 14.3
Wire-haired Fox Terrier 13
Yorkshire Terrier 12.8 13.0

*very low numbers, Corgis merged

Also, visit our page on the genetic diseases of different dog breeds.

Related: How to compare dog and human ages | How to give your dog a longer life

References & Comments

Adams, V. J., Evans, K. M., Sampson, J., & Wood, J. L. N. (2010). Methods and mortality results of a health survey of purebred dogs in the UK. Journal of Small Animal Practice, 51(10), 512-524. This study used data from questionnaires sent to members of breed clubs in the UK. Breeds were only included when the response rate was at least 15%. Cross breeds were not included.

Michell, A. R. “Longevity of British breeds of dog and its relationships with sex, size, cardiovascular variables and disease.” The Veterinary Record 145.22 (1999): 625-629. Data came from questionnaires sent to owners of UK dogs insured with a large pet insurance company.

O’Neill, D. G., Church, D. B., McGreevy, P. D., Thomson, P. C., & Brodbelt, D. C. (2013). Longevity and mortality of owned dogs in England. The Veterinary Journal, 198(3), 638-643. This study accessed UK veterinary clinic databases.

By Andrew Spanner BVSc(Hons) MVetStud, a vet in Adelaide, Australia. These blogs are from a series regularly posted on Facebook and Twitter. Like or follow our page or subscribe via email to read the latest.

andrew and pets
Dr Andrew
Have something to add? Comments are welcome below and will appear within 24 hours of lodging.

Facebooktwitter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *